Chocolate and Carbonara

This weekend I had the chance to cook a meal with my goddaughter.  Earlier this year I gave her a copy of Jamie’s 15minute meals and since then we have two family dinner dates. She choses the recipe then we set about shopping and cooking together then the whole family gather round the table in the kitchen to enjoy the results. Don’t be fooled by the 15 minutes (or the 30 minutes for that matter!) but I don’t think that’s Jamie’s point. I really appreciate his emphasis on enjoying the cooking and eating experience and of that being in the context of family and community…. and it’s precisely that which means that they take longer than 15 minutes! In fact I would suggest that if it takes the prescribed length of time it means that you haven’t spent by far the required time in laughter or talking that’s needed to make the meal a truly fabulous experience!

It’s the end of the roller hockey season (for a few weeks at least) which meant that we had more time to kill and spent a happy 40 minutes or so sipping hot chocolate (unthinkable to have one without cream on top!) at Costa. Our supermarket bags beside us, we whiled away the time chatting about school and GCSEs and pranks to play on teachers – nothing much changes from generation to generation I feel! Then back home and still a bit of time to kill we giggled through the first half hour of Jonny English (I have to say that I did most of the laughing!) before heading off to the kitchen. On the menu was Chorizo Carbonara and salad followed by Jamie’s cinnamon peaches with custard and crushed shortbread crumble. Half the fun is improvising and making stuff up as you go along – like how much squeezy lemon constitutes the juice of half a lemon, guessing together and hoping for the best.

Last time we made hamburgers with a snazzy coleslaw salad followed by Jamie’s Eton Mess, also a heap of fun. But I hope you get it, what makes the food so good and enjoyable is the fun and chatter and spending time with friends in the whole process. I have been out of the country for most of my goddaughter’s life and so I am really enjoying being around a bit more and creating the space to get to know her. I love that God made food, and he made making it and eating it so enjoyable, he made it about celebration in its simplest and purest sense – a celebration of life, of friends, of tastes and colour, of God’s creativity, and the creativity of men and women made in his image; a celebration of time spent with each other. Thanks for your help Jamie!

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